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Standard Occupational Classification System

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Title: Standard Occupational Classification System  
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Standard Occupational Classification System

The Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) System is a United States government system of classifying occupations. It is used by U.S. federal government agencies collecting occupational data, enabling comparison of occupations across data sets. It is designed to cover all occupations in which work is performed for pay or profit, reflecting the current occupational structure in the United States. The 2010 SOC includes 840 occupational types.[1]

Users of occupational data include government program managers, industrial and labor relations practitioners, students considering career training, job seekers, vocational training schools, and employers wishing to set salary scales or locate a new plant.

The SOC codes have a hierarchical format, so for example the code "15-0000" refers to occupations in the "Computer and Mathematical Occupations" category, and "15-1130" is a subset for "Software Developers and Programmers." [2]

The SOC does not categorize industries or employers. There are orthogonal category systems for industries used with SOC data, most commonly NAICS.


  • Other countries 1
  • Classifications 2
  • History 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Other countries

National variants of the SOC are used by the governments of the United Kingdom,[3] Canada,[4] Spain[5] the Philippines,[6] and Singapore.[7]



The SOC was established in 1977, and revised by a committee representing specialists from across U.S. government agencies in the 1990s. [8] SOC codes were updated again in 2010, and the process for an update scheduled for 2018 is underway.[9][10]

See also


  1. ^ Standard Occupational Classification System (SOC), U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
  2. ^ 2010 SOC Major Groups] at
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ Revising the Standard Occupational Classification System, June 1999, pages iii, 1.
  9. ^
  10. ^
  • U.S. Department of Labor (2000). Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) Manual (2000 ed.). Washington, D.C.

External links

  • The Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) System
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